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Anterior Hip Replacement Approach Can Reduce Pain, Speed Recovery and Improve Mobility

WHO IS A CANDIDATE FOR ANTERIOR HIP REPLACEMENT?

Hip Replacement incision options

Many people suffering with arthritis, hip pain, stiffness and limited hip movement can now choose minimally invasive surgery when hip replacement is the chosen treatment of the patient and their doctor.

One of the least invasive surgical options is Anterior Hip Replacement. The Anterior Approach is a proven technique that minimizes pain and shortens the time to recovery.

WHAT IS ANTERIOR HIP REPLACEMENT?

The Anterior Approach to hip replacement surgery allows the surgeon to reach the hip joint from the front of the hip as opposed to the lateral (side) or the posterior (back) approach. This way, the hip can be replaced without detachment of muscle from the pelvis or femur during surgery. The surgeon can simply work through the natural interval between the muscles. The most important muscles for hip function, the gluteal muscles that attach to the pelvis and femur, are left undisturbed and, therefore, do not require a healing process to recover from surgical trauma.

The Anterior Approach to hip replacement was first performed in Europe in 1947. Since that time, the technique has been continually refined with advancing medical technology. A specialized operation table is often used to help improve access.  Intraoperative x-ray or computer navigation is typically used to confirm implant position and leg length. At Reconstructive Orthopaedics, Drs. Jonathan Bell, Steven Goldfarb, Michael Swank and Kevin Shaw are trained in the Anterior Approach and have used it with great success.  Patients have reported high satisfaction of the quick return to function.  Pain has been significantly decreased.  

HOW DOES ANTERIOR HIP REPLACEMENT IMPROVE PATIENT RECOVERY?

Anterior Hip Replacement advantages

Conventional Hip Replacement
Conventional lateral or posterior surgery typically requires strict precautions for the patient. They must limit flexing of the hip to no more than 90 degrees which complicates normal activities like sitting in a chair, sitting on a toilet seat, putting on shoes or getting into a car. Simply climbing stairs may also be more difficult during recovery.

Anterior Hip Replacement
Anterior Hip Replacement allows patients to immediately bend their hip freely and bear full weight when comfortable, resulting in a more rapid return to normal function. After surgery, patients are instructed to use their hip normally without cumbersome restrictions. In supervised therapy, patients go up and down stairs before their hospital release.

Disclaimer: All patients are different and have varying degrees of disability prior to surgery, as well as inherent differences in their overall capabilities. The outcomes described herein speak for the majority of patients with normal hip deterioration and average capabilities for their age group.

Kevin Shaw, MD

Reconstructive Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine

References:
Anterior Hip Replacement

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